You always worry about going outside, being exposed to smog and other pollutants from global warming, but did you know that, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “the average person receives 72 percent of their chemical exposure at home?”
This means that “the very places most people consider safest paradoxically exposes them to the greatest amounts of potentially hazardous pollutants.” To combat poor indoor air quality, learn how to improve indoor air quality with Warner Service’s quick cheat sheet:
- Trust your health. If you have just moved into a new residence, trust your body’s reaction to the indoor air. If you have a cough; itchy, watery eyes; runny nose; breathing problems; headaches; or skin irritation, consider improving your home’s indoor air quality with these few tricks.
- Check around your home. Your home could be its own problem. Poor indoor air quality can be caused by lack of ventilation and circulation, condensation on windows and walls, dirty HVAC equipment, dusty furniture, excess humidity, no floormat by the front and back doors, and more. If you smell bad odors, have trouble breathing, or are getting sick, check these few places before calling in the reinforcements.
- Identify random potential pollutants in your home. It is not only the obvious that will cause poor indoor air quality. Hidden culprits can include the following:
- Asbestos from recent renovations or insulation
- Candle residue
- Carbon monoxide exposure from stoves, space heaters, chimneys, and fireplaces
- Cigarette smoke
- Household cleaning products
- Laundry detergent and softener
- Lead-based paint
- Mold and mildew growth
- Pet dander and cat saliva
- Radon exposure
- Rat urine
- Rotting food
- Soil and plant debris
To find more information about these sneaky factors, visit The Inside Story: A Guide to Indoor Air Quality by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
- Invest in a Home Air Kit. This company offers a quick 4-step process to actually testing your home’s (or office’s) indoor air quality. Begin by ordering a Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) Test, VOC and Formaldehyde Test, Formaldehyde Test, or Tobacco Smoke Test to measure toxic chemical compositions in the air. Then, send the test back to their researchers at the American Industrial Hygiene Association. After 2 weeks, Home Air Check will send back the results via email with a how to on improving specifically your home’s indoor air.
- Install carbon monoxide and radon detectors. Monitoring throughout the year is better than testing once or twice. The experts at Green Home Guide recommend putting these detectors in the room that shares a door with the garage.
They suggest one test for an apartment or home with up to 2,000 square feet; two tests for a home with between 2,000 and 4,000 square feet; and three tests for a home with 2,000 to 4,000 square feet plus a finished basement or between 4,000 to 6,000 square feet overall.
If you think something in your home is making your family sick, you are probably right. Improve indoor air quality by checking in the cracks and crevices of your home. If you do not find anything, see if the list above contains a culprit that your family is not used to breathing.
For the very best protection, call a Warner Service technician for more information about the Air Scrubber by Aerus. One of the best indoor air quality products today, it uses NASA-approved ActivePure™ technology to clean, freshen, and purify your home’s air. You can also download our Indoor Air Quality Guide to see how house plants and HEPA-filtered vacuums can help your family breathe easier: